“The Tournament Begins!”
Tournament arcs are meant to be a time of great excitement, and although there was some impressive stuff on display, my feelings are quite mixed on this one.
Though Yurui is a really unpleasant and confrontational guy, he didn’t deserve to lose out like this. Worst of all, Boruto probably could have won without relying on the Scientific Ninja Tool, had he worked harder on making the most of his natural talents. If he’d listened to Sasuke by meticulously honing his skills on the shuriken, I’m sure he could have defeated Yurui without resorting to such a cheap trick. Instead, this victory feels greatly tarnished and adds to the growing level of disappointment I’ve been feeling towards Boruto, ever since he began relying on the Scientific Ninja Tool.
This starkly contrasts Shikadai, who really took his experiences from the Byakuya Gang incident to heart. From a slacker who didn’t think the system could be changed, Shikadai’s grown to become an incredibly hard worker who’d fight tooth and nail to progress, even when the odds are heavily stacked against him. His calculated win over Yodo was extremely impressive, especially because he started off on the back foot, before using his wits to gradually figure out how he could defeat her. Like father, like son.
Anyway, I wouldn’t be surprised if Boruto’s cheating became exposed in front of everyone. After all, it’s a ticking time bomb that the anime has steadily been building up. I fear that Naruto’s heart might be broken in a terrible fashion, but it’s ultimately for the best if it means that Boruto can grow as an individual. As such, I look forwards to witnessing the ensuing blowout.
Criticisms of the ‘Tournament Arc’
Previously, I expressed joy that the anime would go back to cover stuff that the movie didn’t have time for. While it was great to see all these unique jutsu on display, for the most part, I was left rather unsatisfied. The fights weren’t bad, but I definitely wished that there would be more to them, and I especially didn’t like how little time they spent on each fight. In fact, we blitzed through the tournament’s first round in a single episode.
While this is certainly better than nothing (by which I mean a snapshot montage), I can’t say I’m too pleased. When utilised to its maximum potential, tournament arcs are meant to be a special construct that can make an anime’s ratings skyrocket. Even if there were some fantastic moments, so much has been squandered, especially when you compare this iteration of the Chunin Exam with the original one. It doesn’t look like we’re going to get a single fight that will be anywhere near as memorable. But given how the rest of the movie panned out, I reckon that Studio Pierrot are placing all their poker chips on the events that are going to follow the exams. Time saved here means time that can be dedicated towards other kinds of action, which could prove to be more beneficial in the long run.
Sorry folks, I’m afraid that my coverage of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations will go on an extended hiatus. With my university exams coming up, I’ll need to take about 3 weeks off blogging and sadly, I was unable to find someone else who could help cover in my stead. Mainly because I’m the only writer who watches Boruto. Obviously this isn’t ideal and I really apologise for any problems it might cause. But I promise I’ll make up for it by whacking out a crazy megapost. So until then, take care and see you next time!